Department of Art and Art History Staff

Theater Company of kt Shorb Honored with B. Iden Payne Award

Fri. November 11, 2016

photograph of actor Jonathan Itchon with hair tied in a bun playing a traditional guitar
Jonathan Itchon, member of graduate coordinator and Theatre and Dance M.F.A. candidate kt shorb's theater company, was recently honored with the B. Iden Payne award for Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role (Musical Theatre) for his work in The Mikado: Reclaimed. The Mikado: Reclaimed flipped the Gilbert and Sullivan classic on its head, presenting an (almost) all-Asian American cast performing a devised theatre piece with select musical numbers from the (in)famous operetta. Set in an internment camp in the near future, internees seek humanity amidst racism, corruption, and xenophobia.


Robin Hood: An Elegy, directed by kt shorb, showing at Vortex Theatre

Thu. August 6, 2015


pink script reading robin hood on tome of image of person wearing baseball cap

Graduate Coordinator (Art Education, Design, and Studio Art) kt shorb directs Robin Hood: An Elegy, playing at The Vortex August 7–22, 2015. The play was featured in the Austin Chronicle's "Gay Place: A Feather in the Cap" and "Getting Political With The Tree Play and Robin Hood: An Elegy."

Eric McMaster exhibits at Press Street's Antenna Gallery

Mon. September 22, 2014

Hockey players in rink a fraction of the size of a real rink
Image courtesy of the artist.

R. Eric McMaster presents work in An Imperfect Force at Press Street's Antenna gallery. In his work, McMaster features "themes of obedience, vulnerability, resistance, and eventual acceptance. While all of these traits are apparent in sporting events, they can also be found in societal situations; as such his work mixes both easily read, ever-insistent sport regulations and the veiled societal interactions that manipulate humanities’ natural first response." 

The exhibition will be on display September 13 through October 5. McMaster will give an artist's talk on October 2.

The Department of Art and Art History Remembers Donna Bruton, 1954-2012

Thu. October 11, 2012


Donna Bruton

It is with great sadness that the Department of Art and Art History reports the passing of former faculty member Donna Bruton. A thoughtful friend and amazingly patient educator, Donna taught in the department from July 1991 – August 1993 before taking a position at the Rhode Island School of Design, where she remained for the rest of career. A nationally recognized artist, Donna had paintings presented in group exhibitions and 15 solo shows. Her work is included in private collections in London, Germany, Holland, Detroit, Chicago, Houston, Dallas, and Austin, as well as in private collections at the RISD Museum and the Gwanjiu Museum in Korea. Although her time in our department was relatively short, in the words of John D. Murchison Professor in Art John Yancey, “she had a profound and lasting impact on those who worked with her.”

Jack Risley Appointed Chair of the Department of Art and Art History

Thu. July 12, 2012


Jack Risley, associate dean of academic affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), has been appointed chair and Ruth Head Centennial Professor of the Department of Art and Art History at The University of Texas at Austin.

Jack Risley

As a teacher and administrator, Risley has held academic positions at the Yale School of Art, New York University, and the Cooper Union. He has served as a visiting lecturer at the Cleveland Institute of Art, Harvard University, and Rhode Island School of Design. His teaching has included both graduate and undergraduate courses in art.

Risley has been making and exhibiting artwork in prominent venues all over the world for the past 25 years, including exhibitions at Vienna Secession, the American Academy in Rome, the Brooklyn Museum, and the Yale University Art Museum, among others. He is represented by Postmasters Gallery in New York City, where he has had six solo exhibitions. He is the recipient of the Rome Prize, a Pollock Krasner Foundation grant, a Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Grant, and a Marie Sharpe Walsh Art Foundation Award. He has maintained an active studio practice and notable international exhibition schedule while distinguishing himself as an academic administrator. His work as an artist has been widely featured and discussed in the art press, which hails him as a notable American sculptor.

“I am absolutely thrilled and honored to join the College of Fine Arts,” said Risley. “The University of Texas at Austin’s deep commitment to the arts sets it apart from other institutions. The College of Fine Arts has great reach, and its influence can be felt nationally and internationally. The Department of Art and Art History has a potent mix of programs each with a long and distinguished history. There is an almost alchemical mix of ingredients—keenly ambitious students, renowned faculty, a picture-perfect campus, unrivaled libraries and archives, all in the midst of a city with great charm and a sense of humor.”

Risley studied at the Cooper Union, earned a bachelor of arts degree from Oberlin College and a master of fine arts degree from Yale School of Art. Risley has served on the Innovations Task Force of the International Council of Fine Art Deans since 2009. He is an active member of College Art Association, the International Council of Art Administrators, and serves on the Think Tank advisory board for Foundations in Art Theory and Education.

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